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Rayman 2: The Great Escape (ntscus) (n64) [100 %] [Single Segment]

Decision: Accept

Congratulations to 'Manocheese'!
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Run Information

Rayman 2: The Great Escape (ntscus) (n64) [100 %] [Single Segment]

Verification Files

Please refer to the Verification Guidelines before posting.

Please post your opinions about the run and be certain to conclude your post with a verdict (Accept/Reject). If you wish to remain anonymous, you can also send a pm with your reply to 'sdaverification' (please state clearly in that case which run you have verified). This is not a contest where the majority wins - Each verification will be judged on its content.
Edit history:
KirbyComment: 2018-01-18 02:09:53 pm
KirbyComment: 2018-01-18 01:14:43 pm
KirbyComment: 2018-01-18 01:13:49 pm
I've taken the time to watch the entire run from the verification file, so now I will give my opinions on the speedrun as fair as I can. One thing beforehand though is that I have noticed the run was paused once during the run, but based on my judgement, nothing happened between gameplay before and after the cut.

Last frame before the pause

First frame after the pause

Now I will split my comments per world, starting with the good parts (stating highlights of what happened throughout said world), followed by the bad parts (stating mistakes and oddities thoughout said world) that all stuck out to me:

- Makes good use of ending the respawning animation early
- Makes good use of reducing lag whenever beneficial
- Uses the best possible Lum route

Woods of Light
Overall: Good

Good parts: Impressive lag-based ledge grab before the Baby Globox cutscene skip

Bad parts: None

Fairy Glade
Overall: Good

Good parts: Impressive Quick Drop + Airswim and he optimized his barrel-carrying movement very well to have to shoot the least amount of Helicopter Bombs possible during the machine section.

Bad parts: His movement approaching the climbing wall after freeing Ly was a bit questionable and not optimal. As he went through the wind tunnels, ManoCheese exited the second wind tunnel too early, which means it was impossible for him to reach the next wind tunnel. However he did react accordingly and hung back to the previous wind tunnel to minimize the timeloss.

Marshes of Awakening
Overall: Good

Good parts: He optimized using his speed-ups on Ssssam as much as possible. To note on this, when you speed-up, your left and right movement is disabled, so only whenever he has to move sideways, will he stop his speed-up. This was managed well.

Bad parts: None

Walk of Life
Overall: Great

Good parts: He managed to stay ahead of Ly for the entire race, which even I never managed to do, so that should say enough about how well this world went. He also skipped one of the checkpoints which add time to your timer ticking down, which is very risky, but he still managed to get a time-profit out of it.

Bad parts: None

The Bayou
Overall: Okay

Good parts: He managed to break the third cage early which is pretty tough to pull off. It doesn't directly safe time, but it prevents having to potentially stand still on the tree stump above it to break the cage.

Bad parts: Before reaching the first checkpoint, from the floating barrel, he jumped to the ledge containing the checkpoint and then jumped to the treestump. You can however skip the ledge and just jump to the treestump from the barrel, which is a bit faster, so that is a minor oddity I noticed. Another thing I found odd is that after hitting the first switch and walking across
the crumbling bridge-pieces, he doesn't cut the corners by jumping diagonally from one bridge piece to the next, which would've saved time due to less distance being traveled.

Sanctuary of Water & Ice
Overall: Good

Good parts: In the first level, he went for a Quick Drop from a corner of a ledge that's more than 90°, which I did not expect him to be doing in this run. He got this fairly quickly and
managed his Airswim movement well. As there is very little room for error for making it to the end before running out of air, it's nice that he made it in time on the first go.

Bad parts: None

Menhir Hills
Overall: Great

Good parts: In the second level, he managed to tire out the shell as soon as possible while having it not crash into the wall, which is hard to do. He manipulated the Walking Shell well to avoid this. He also maximized the speedups on the Walking Shell as much as he can get away with. The turns you have to make are extremely notorious of making you crash into the wall if
you go too fast. That aside he also got the Infinite Barrel Glitch really fast and first try.

Bad parts: None

Cave of Bad Dreams
Overall: Good

Good parts: He stood still for a few seconds in this level. While that seems to have no reason, there is. It's to manipulate the skull cycles in his favour to get an early cycle on the second skull in said room. This is not easy, so that he got that correctly is nice. He also got the cycle skip at the start of the Jano fight.

Bad parts: After the Mini Jano fight, he accidentally missed throwing the orb onto the pedestal once.

Menhir Hills Revisit
Overall: Good

Good parts: He did a neat little trick after saving Clark where he skipped grabbing one of the Purple Lums. While not overly difficult, he did in a pleasantly different way, so it was nice to see. Nothing else really notable going on here.

Bad parts: None

The Canopy
Overall: Okay

Good parts: In the second level, he managed to hit the pole from afar. This skips having to wait for Globox longer. This way he can walk the pole as soon as possible. He also managed to do
a sequence of tricks that for a while was considered TAS-only. He skipped a pirate fight by manipulating the projectiles to hit him, then followed up by shooting immediately which cancels the stun animation which allowed him to pass over the gate. The trick used afterwards to get past the door that closes on you, has been made alot easier due to a recent discovery, so that has made this alot more doable. The skipping of the closing door was done very quickly.

Bad parts: Sadly, though he managed a very hard sequence of tricks in the third level, this was also where one of the two big timelosses of the run were. Getting this trick from the cannonballs that fire first, are really stupid to get the skip of getting over the laser gate with. However after that, the firey projectiles that were used to pass over it didn't allow the skip to be done quickly either, which is unfortunate.

Whale Bay
Overall: Good

Good parts: In the second level, the palm tree clip used is very finicky and likes to not work alot of the time, but he got this clip first try. He also skipped as many of Carmen's bubbles in the
third level as much as he could to travel the least amount of distance during the underwater section. After that he also got a cutscene skip which is pretty precise to avoid the trigger of.

Bad parts: None

Sanctuary of Stone & Fire
Overall: Okay

Good parts: The band-aid (or X) that needs to be hit in the first level was hit in a way I've never seen before and it allowed to grab the Purple Lum that comes out from behind it much earlier. Very impressive! In the temple level, he skipped one of the stalactites to reach a floating platform early. It's a small but risky optimization, so pretty good to see that here. He also managed to get through the shell section without death warps, which is not easy. This section is all so eager to make you crash for often no real reason.

Bad parts: During the plum section where he has to throw plums onto these spikes. On one of them, the plum didn't fall straight down onto Rayman and instead dropped right in the lava. Possibly because the plum was hit by one of Rayman's shots as it got stuck onto this spike and stored the recoil of it. Then Mano waited for no apparent reason and must've thought it would respawn on this same spike but didn't. This is probably the most costly timeloss of all, mostly because it could've technically been avoided, or at the very least a small portion of the timeloss.

Echoing Caves
Overall: Great

Good parts: Very impressive Fast Recovery at the start to get a Big Lum early at the very start and also a very fast door clip at the end of the first level.

Bad parts: None

The Precipice
Overall: Great

Good parts: This world is very straightforward and has speedrunning in mind. Nothing really to say that stands out. Nicely executed overall.

Bad parts: None

Top of the World
Overall: Good

Good parts: This world is pretty much the same deal. He did have to wait for a Barrel Pirate to shoot one time because he has to save his Golden Fists for later, but it was beneficial so it's not a timeloss really.

Bad parts: None

Sanctuary of Rock & Lava
Overall: Great

Good parts: In the room with the barrels rolling down, he grabbed the Purple Lum as early as possible, making nice use of the rolling barrels. He also broke the first and second cage with a new strategy I've not seen and done quickly. Very nice!

Bad parts: None

Beneath Sanctuary of Rock & Lava
Overall: Good

Good parts: Nothing special to add here, execution went well overall and no mistakes no the boss.

Bad parts: After the first respawn, he flew up a bit too early, causing him to take damage and fall down a bit, losing a bit of time

Walk of Power
Overall: Good

Good parts: In this race I don't think you can get ahead of Ly, so well it was done well as far as I can say.

Bad parts: A bit silly but he ran past a Lum. He may've thought he got close enough to collect it, but it wasn't collected, so that wasted a second.

Tomb of the Ancients
Overall: Good

Good parts: He skipped a deathwarp that could save him time, but it loses a Golden Fist, so it is a tradeoff and generally speaking I'd say it's up to preference what you do. He got the Fast
Recovery trick to skip raising a barrel first try. Also very nice manipulating of the last Henchman to skip having to fight it and get the last cage earlier. Since he saved his one Golden Fist due to not death-warping, he was able to regain the timeloss from not doing the deathwarp by 1-cycling Clark.

Bad parts: None

Iron Mountains
Overall: Great

Good parts: The switches in the spinning room can be a pain to hit, but they weren't a problem in this run, so that's good. The shell section accompanying the Robot Dinosaur is very scary and more often than not results into a deathwarp, but Mano avoided that from happening.

Bad parts: None

Prison Ship
Overall: Great

Good parts: This to me is the highlight of the run. It's in my opinion the Great hardest world in the game, because you have to get all the Lums while sliding, which is hard to control at best. Mano even used backwards slide jumping to avoid having to deathwarp due to one Lum being very jerkishly placed in the second level. This level is the hardest to go through without death-warps, not to mention, at the end of the slide, one mistake will literally kill the run. The final boss also went near perfect, even good luck on the position of the ammunition on the second phase. Kudos to you on this world, great job and great ending!

Bad parts: He missed one shot on the second phase of the Grolgoth fight, but recovered nicely.

Skipped tricks
- In the second level of The Bayou, there is a Henchman Skip you can do that skips having to fight the Henchman and hit the switch to slide open the bridge. You do this by jumping over the gap and then get damage boosted by a projectile with precise timing. It is however extremely difficult. I have never managed to do it myself, so it's for certain a segmented-only trick.

- There is a trick to skip the boss of The Sanctuary of Water & Ice, which ManoCheese didn't go for. It involves doing backwards slide jumping to make a big enough jump to clear the big gap. This isn't nearly as difficult as the skip above, though it requires alot of practice. Beyond that, there are many factors to be taken into account which can ruin the skip. These being jump rhythm, jump spacing, the icicles Axel fires and the timing of them and the final jump to clear the gap.

- In the first level of Whale Bay, at the end, you can skip using the Purple Lum to get to the exit of the level and instead use a lamp to jump up to the exit. This skip is however very finicky and I don't think it can really be made consistent, as it just relies on the wonky physics of the upper ledge to go in your favor.

- In the first level of The Sanctuary of Stone & Fire, there is a similar trick like the one in The Bayou, where you clear a large gap using the projectiles of a Henchman. This one however is even more difficult than the one in The Bayou and therefore is not used for Single Segment runs.

- It is possible to skip the Mini Jano fight in Sanctuary of Stone & Fire without the use of Small Caterpillars to damage boost you, but it is very precise and likely also dependant on the lag to be severe enough for it to work at all.

- You can skip the boss of Beneath the Santuary of Rock & Lava, but I've only seen it be done on video once, which should say enough of the difficulty.

Now with specific comments out of the way. To sum up the run, this run was overall very well executed. While there were some mistakes here and there, I think what's most important to note about this, is that this is the only 100% speedrun to my knowledge to have no unintentional deathwarps. I think even the absolute fastest time had 5 deaths. That said a deathless run is an impressive feat. The mistakes only add up to 2 minutes, so I say great job to you ManoCheese. Getting great runs as always in this game!

Verdict: ACCEPT
Do you have a time stamp for the pause?
The pause happened between 1:44:48 and 1:44:52 in the verification file.
There is an obvious discontinuity in the middle of the pause. The music and the picture change. I'm tempted to say that the question mark this raises is such that some kind of explanation is needed. I've asked Manocheese to comment on what's going on.

KirbyComment, while we're waiting for Manocheese to show up, could I ask you if the behavior of before and after the pause is the normal game behavior? It doesn't look like your first screenshot corresponds to the frame preceding the second screenshot? But maybe the gameplay continues in the background for a few frames when pausing?
Edit history:
KirbyComment: 2018-01-19 02:33:25 pm
KirbyComment: 2018-01-19 02:22:07 pm
KirbyComment: 2018-01-19 02:20:14 pm
When I mentioned these 2 screenshots, it's more so to prove that after the pause, the gameplay left off exactly how you'd expect it to.

During the pause, there was clearly a cut in the footage.  I don't think the cut was really necessary unless he had the game paused for a very long time. It only makes it look more suspicious. I'm pretty sure ManoCheese has paused in some runs in the past (possibly SDA-runs), but I trust they aren't really raising suspicion on the run in my opinion. As far as the pause screen itself goes, nothing really goes on other than backgrounds and objects looping in an animation and the totals on screen do match before and after the cut. Also after the pause, the Lum and Cage totals are briefly visible after the game was unpaused, but that's normal; that always happens. Whether the gameplay continues in the background for a few frames upon pausing, I don't know. Could be a lag-frame, but I don't the technicalities behind that.

Possibly in this situation it would've been wiser to leave the pause in entirely and edit the pause out if he wants to export his run to YouTube and such (which he did). I know the way this run is submitted, there's no definitive proof the run was cheated, but if needed, he should submit the raw footage file of the run if necessary.
Yes, a cucco riding the ground.
Thanks for verifying.

I paused in order to change discs, since a DVD can only fit two hours of footage at standard quality. I did the same thing in my any% run on SDA. Although I now use a DVD recorder with a hard drive and can thus record the entire run as one video, I have to dub the video to disc to transfer it to my computer, so I split it in two first. Tests I've done have shown that when I split the video, dub to disc, and try to combine the halves, one or two frames (and a little bit of audio) go missing right at the boundary. Thus, I pause the game before the two-hour mark, then split the video in the middle of the pause. The pause screen frames act as a buffer, preventing any gameplay frames from being lost in the split.

I never noticed before, but as KirbyComment said, the lum and cage counter appears if you unpause while controlling Rayman (but this doesn't seem to happen if you pause during a cutscene). Aside from the counters, the "after" frame is slightly different from the "before" frame, but I think that's just because the game doesn't repeat the previous frame when you unpause (i.e. the "after" frame is what you would see if there were no pause). In order to assuage fears of splicing, I like to pause in a position that would be very difficult to recreate, i.e. pause in such a way that it would be hard to make the "before" and "after" frames match up in any other way than just continuing the same run. For this reason, I pause during gameplay instead of a cutscene, and I fire shots right before pausing. You can see the shot I fired before pausing hit the wall right after I unpause.
I admit that I find it hard to see on the "before" frame that you're about to fire a shot. It would have been easier if the pause had been delayed a bit. There is also some debris in the "before" frame that's not present in the "after" frame. But it's possible that it was about to disappear anyways. Either way, I understand the explanation and I agree that it's in an area where it would have been unpractical to add footage from another attempt.

I would like to add that this is the kind of thing you have an interest in pointing out yourself instead of having someone else point it out for you. Since the original video is now split up in two parts on the hdd, I assume there is no way to provide just the pause without the split? It could be worth to have that part better documented another time though. Even though it would mean at a lower quality setting.

Moving on from the pause question, congrats on the run. I understand this is quite an achievement. I haven't watched the run yet, but would like to do so (especially if there comes some commentary to go along with it).
Yes, a cucco riding the ground.
Yeah, I probably should have mentioned it in the internal comments on the submission form. My bad. As you said, the video is now split on the DVD recorder's hard drive, so there is no way to show the original. That does give me an idea for future runs, though; before doing the split, I could dub a lower-quality version of the video to a single disc (I think the recorder has this option). That way the entire pause could be included.

I do plan on including audio commentary when I send in the final encodes.
Okay, watched this and it does seem as Kirby was saying. Without his comments I might have had a few odd questions here and there. No-one's said anything about the seemingly missing lums and cages. In Fairy Glade ('Radura delle fate') for example you only have 48/50 and 6/7. Are the rest missing in the game or did I completely blank out on a revisit?
The last 2 Lums in Fairy Glade can only be gotten by going into a secret entrance in Echoing Caves that leads back to Fairy Glade into a sealed-off area. This area contains a cage at the end containing 2 Lums and then you exit this area and go right back to Echoing Caves (between 1:26:43 and 1:27:58 in the verification file). As for missing cages elsewhere, SDA-rules for 100% go by the percentage counter. Cages are not included in this counter, so any cages containing no Yellow Lums are skipped.
Aha. Good to know. BTW, when is the percentage shown? I never noticed. Is it reflected on in the ending somehow?
I'm pretty sure it's never shown in the run itself, but it will in fact show up as 100% if the file was saved
Edit history:
LotBlind: 2018-01-26 10:46:44 am
LotBlind: 2018-01-26 10:46:03 am
Huh... That's an unfortunate omission. Luckily seems you at least are able to verify the category goal was met.

A/V check, cheating check. Based on the video and Kirby's comments, I think this is a pretty safe

accept! grats. (good to have this game featured as it looks pretty solid as platformers go)
Decision posted.